Eye Tracking and Web Experience
AIS Transactions on Human-Computer Interaction
User experience research aims to understand a user's point of view. Because eye tracking allows us to literally see through a user's eyes, it can serve as a valuable tool in web studies, particularly in web design and development. To understand how eye tracking can be pivotal in website studies, this paper scientifically explains how the human visual system works and how eye tracker technologies can record what we register with our eyes. It then explains how web design can benefit from the data
... that eye tracking studies deliver. Finally, the paper discusses trends for eye tracking in future web experience research. Eye tracking can provide unique insight into visual search tasks. Researchers often ask participants to think out loud and describe what they're doing, but there are two potential downsides to this approach: 1), the participant can become distracted from the task, 2) the participant may not report everything that he or she sees, either as an omission or because the information is not observed at a conscious level. Eye tracking provides an objective measurement of participants' visual patterns that allows us to determine what aspects of our designs draw attention first and most. For websites like ours, this is particularly valuable when educating a user on a complex topic, making it clear what the next step in a process is, or driving users towards a call to action.